Ingrid Halvorsen


I had laparoscopic bariatric revision (RNY>RNY) surgery on 12/21/21 which appeared to be successful. On 12/28/21 I had a follow-up visit with my surgeon during which a drain tube was removed. My vitals were normal and I appeared to be recovering as expected, but still very tired. Three days later, on the afternoon of 12/31/21, I lay down for a nap. I woke up coughing up blood. I immediately called 911. When the EMTs arrived I was able to tell them that I had surgery 10 days previously. (Sepsis and Surgery) This was a key piece of information, because I was unconscious by the time the ambulance reached the nearest hospital 30 miles away.

If I had not coughed up blood, it likely that I would not have awoken from my nap. However, I was diagnosed in the ER with sepsis and airlifted to the hospital 70 miles away where I had the bariatric surgery. I was rushed into surgery. It was determined that my small intestine had perforated and I had peritonitis, which led to sepsis and septic shock. (Sepsis and Perforated Bowel, Sepsis and Septic Shock) I spent a week in Intensive Care, and was hospitalized for another six weeks, during which I had three endoscopic procedures and another open surgery to repair my colon, which had been nicked during the emergency surgery.

A week after the second open surgery I was released from the hospital and spent three weeks in a rehabilitation facility before returning home. I had a period of profound depression during the hospitalization, which improved with medication and transfer to rehab. One year later my renal function is still lower than normal and I am still somewhat anemic, but my limbs and organs are intact and otherwise I have recovered fully. I did lose quite a bit of hair, but it has grown back. I am lucky to have survived and am grateful for the prompt diagnosis and treatment.

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